Just the other day, as I was eating lunch in the park with my wife and the new kid, I noticed, lifting the quinoa to my mouth, that I had baby poop on my hand and was eating from the spoon that we use to feed the cat.
I have noticed a sharp drop-off in sharpness of late. This is what happens when you lurch from bed every two hours to calculate how many milliliters are in an ounce and put the resulting calculation into a baby’s mouth. Lately he is taking in 110 milliliters of milk every feeding.
I don’t know where he’s putting all that, but when you look deeply into his eyes, I mean really deeply, you can see the Universe, and you can see a little Empty/Full gauge that is often reading at 110%.
He’s all of 11 pounds now and he has formidable mass, a density that suggests that he is living in the gravitational field of Jupiter. He breathes an ancient, raspy breath when drinking his meal, and seems like a very old man indeed who would regale us with tales of his digestion, omitting no detail. Baby acne seethes across his face like a summer storm, then perfectly clears up 20 minutes later. He can poop in so many amazing colors I know that I will never again be able to eat anything with Gulden’s mustard on it.
But it is the sleeplessness, the sleeplessness, as Marlon Brando said in Apocalypse Now. Brando and Coppola went up the river, never to escape from Conrad’s novel, and I feel the same. In just five weeks, we’ve gone through 42 cases of diapers and changed this baby 16 million times. Does anybody know what day it is? I don’t, but I am sure glad Bill Clinton is president.
I’ve thought about this long and hard, and I really want to get something out of this, like a book deal, or a column in the New York Times. I want to leverage this self-regarding age of ours for my own gain. Hear me out on this for a sec. The little guy always wants to be moving, rocked in my arms, carried about, bumping along in his stroller. So we invent this thing: You have your carrier, your Baby Bjorn, in front. On your back you have one of those Camelback water carriers topped off with milk, with the tube running right into the baby. Slap on a Foley catheter and an iPad mount, and you would never have to stop moving. You would be able to walk forever. You would keep your baby happy forever.
Ok, that’s stupid. What about t-shirts, the kind with clever baby-humor slogans: Dribbling: Not Just for Basketball Anymore. Or Hey Mom, Thanks for the Mammaries!
Babies flail about in their cribs a lot, so you make a t-shirt that says IF IT FLAILS GOOD, DO IT! Yeah! Tell me I’m on to something. Or just let me get some sleep.